Vancouver lawyer Alex Burton is a newcomer to federal politics having served in the glaring candle-light of the low-profile position of Vancouver-Kingsway’s Liberal riding president when he wasn’t being a Crown prosecutor in the Organized Crime Unit for the BC Attorney’ General. If anyone knows how to dig up dirt on his opponents, this guy will be it.
Although very much an outsider, Toronto-born Burton is not without support from some of the Liberal brain-trust, including Mike Hillman, Kevin Chalmers, and David Gruber. (We’ve never heard of them, either.) In a recent news story, Burton was quoted as saying, “Just watch me.” This was either a reference to his rival, Justin Trudeau’s father’s statement to the Quebec people, or his Justin’s mother’s statement to the Rolling Stones.
Since announcing his candidacy on October 1, Burton has been driving around Canada meeting “ordinary Canadians” (certainly an oxymoron) and getting out from under the “Ottawa Bubble”. This seems like a good approach. After all, it worked so well for Michael Ignatief.
According to the Repository of All Knowledge (Wikipedia) Ms. Coyne is known for a number of things, including being a cousin to National Post dour-puss, Andrew Coyne and neice of former Bank of Canada governor, James Coyne, who was hired after Johnny Cash, Eddie Money and Johnny Paycheck turned the gig down. Ms. Coyne is also famous for having jettisoned from her loins the only daughter ever born that was actually claimed by Pierre Elliot Trudeau. It is not certain if being the mother of PET’s love-child will split the pro-Trudeau vote with her half-brother Justin.
Coyne is known for being against a number of things, besides, Trudeau senior’s hairy chest. She worked tirelessly to defeat both the Meech Lake Accord and the Charlottetown Accord. Her distrust of Accords has led her to picket Honda dealerships, although she admits she is Civic minded.
Coyne’s focus is to clean up the Liberal Party then the entire House of Parliament. Being 57, however, insiders are suggesting she will pay off some people to do the House-cleaning for her; probably temporary workers. From the excitement she garnered when she announced her candidacy for the leadership on June 27th, media pundits are speculating she has a real shot at this race, almost as much as that Alec guy… or was it Alan. What was his name again?
Martha Hall Findlay
Toronto-born Findlay spent the first eight years of her education in a prestigious school with a suspiciously French-sounding name. It was called The Toronto French School. From there she moved to various locales around Ontario eventually graduating at the age of fifteen after skipping three grades along the way. She was voted “Second Smartest Student in all of Ontario”. She was also on the Canadian Ski Team, finishing with a silver in the 1976 Canadian Championships.
Ever popular, Findlay has been a bridesmaid at a number of weddings. As a lawyer, Findlay practiced for years with a number of firms, including a stint as vice-president of The Rider Group. She is a recognized expert at being a “runner-up”.
Hall is best remembered for her intelligent, forthright and insightful campaign to attain the leadership of the Liberal Party when Dion won the post. Thanks to her well-researched and eminently reasonable approach to the major issues of the country, Findlay finished dead last with just 2.7% of the votes cast. She then lost her seat in the election. Apprarently she is well versed in reading financial reports, legal documents and detailed research papers but not the writing on the wall.
Findlay announced her candidacy November 14th after coming out as being against dairy marketing boards since, apparently, all the non-boring topics had already been taken.
Garneau, once a Navy Combat Systems Engineer, (Harper may have to consider a missile defense shield around 24 Sussex Drive) is a true Canadian space pioneer being the first Canuck to fly along with a NASA crew. This initial Canadian venture into space extended the tradition of Canadian military staff being forced to “hitch a ride” with the Americans to where we need them to be.
Garneau’s 1984 trip into space demonstrated his intelligence, cool thinking under pressure and the ability to poop into a vacuum cleaner. These are all important abilities for a potential Head of State.
Garneau was a part of many missions to the International Space Station, mostly serving as shuttlecraft crewman. He was always perplexed when his shipmates always wanted him to wear a red shirt onboard.
After a stint as executive vice-president, then president, of the Canadian Space Agency, (42.4% of Canadians are unaware we even have a space agency) Garneau entered politics in 2006. This action demonstrated that spending an impressive 677 hours in space may possibly affect one’s judgment. To this day he gets panicky around Marvin the Martian cartoons and refuses to listen to The Foo Fighters.
Garneau announced his candidacy on November 28th and has not been heard from since, over the noise of Justin Trudeau reports.
After mixing her up with Canadian icon Catherine McKinnon, and endlessly searching for any kind of media reports about this candidate, we finally fluked onto McCrimmon’s “KarenforCanada.ca” website. We had to use the site for this report’s information source since she doesn’t show up on Wiki, although she has a Facebook page and a Twitter account, but then, so does half the country.
Still, reviewing the website, one realizes the relative unknown challenger appears to be a tough customer. Although now retired from the Canadian Forces, McCrimmon gained the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and distinguished herself by becoming the first female commander to head a Canadian air force squadron. Since her groundbreaking appointment, there have been a number of female Air heads in the military ranks.
Despite her low level media awareness, one can safely bet Liberal party officials don’t try to BS or buffalo her as she could take every one of them three falls out of three. McCrimmon has seen duty in the first Gulf War, the War in the Balkans and did a tour in Afghanistan (the kind that does not include a tour bus and tour director.) She was awarded the Order of Military Merit, the highest non-battle-related medal available, although pundits argue if this trumps Garneau’s Order of Canada. The other candidates, it should be mentioned, are all out of Order.
Visitors to her site can read up on “Where Karen Stands”, although from looking at the picture of her shooting a rather large firearm, it is apparent she stands ready to blow away anyone in her way.
McCrimmon announced her candidacy on Novemeber 14th amid a great deal of fanfare. Unfortunately, it was all for her rival, Trudeau who had gotten a new hairstyle that day.
Although born in Alberta, David Merner is another Vancouver lawyer with designs on the leadership of the Liberal Party of Canada. Being both a Vancouver lawyer and a Liberal, Merner was excommunicated from The Church of Alberta in 2009. Merner held the post of president of the BC wing of the federal Liberals until stepping down into even more obscurity as a leadership hopeful. A bit of a brainiac, he has completed degrees at the University of Alberta and the University of Toronto. He also received a degree at Harvard Law School since, apparently, our own Canadian schools aren’t good enough for him. His campaign slogan is “Hey! I’m running too, you know!”.
Merner announced his candidacy on November 12th but his coverage was eclipsed by the silence of Karen McCrimmon’s announcement two days later, which we also missed.
Jonathan Mousley is a senior government economist. Since his candidacy announcement in June he has become, possibly, the most famous senior government economist in the land. This isn’t difficult, however, given that most people would be hard-pressed to name a single senior government economist, including Jonathan Mousley. Another candidate who has yet to attain the lofty heights of a Wikipedia entry, Mousley still has an Internet presence with a Twitter account and a Farmville membership. His website boasts that he is the man that “wants governments to serve the people and help them succeed at home and abroad.” He did not clarify why Canadians abroad need help succeeding given they have already succeeded in fleeing the country. It seems apparent Jonathan is, perhaps, not so much hoping to win, as he is looking to increase his public profile. This is a realistic goal given that he couldn’t possibly decrease it.
Finally someone we think we may have heard of; Joyce Murray is a long-serving Liberal MP representing Vancouver Quadra; John Turner’s old riding. Turner, of course, was the only Liberal leader to come from BC, the country having learned its lesson. He eventually became Prime Minister in a regime that lasted almost as long as Kim Campbell’s. Murray joins what’s-his-face and the other guy as yet another Vancouver lawyer in the hunt for the Liberal crown. She is also one of a host of females in the race, despite the fact the equal rights and pay equity loving Liberals have never had a woman at the helm. Murray doesn’t yet have the endorsement of any big name Liberals but is certain to double that amount in the short term. Murray announced her candidacy on November 26th but her media saturation was affected when people confused her with Murray from accounting.
George Takach is best known for playing the famous role of “Commander Sulu” on Star Trek. What? Oh, wait; that was George Takai. Let’s see… not much on Google about him; practically nothing. No Twitter feed, no Facebook page… Hang on, here we go; a news story about him from Macleans magazine.
Apparently he is a Toronto-based technology lawyer and wants to drag Canada into the 21st century, technologically. To do this, he is going to after the “video gamer” vote which he sees as a large, untapped electoral resource. He has plans to rouse the Geek Army, currently laying in wait in their mother’s basements, by promising faster downloads and less expensive Internet access. (His platform is eerily similar to a promotion run by Bell Mobility just last week, according to the lady on the phone trying to get us to switch.)
For a guy who claims to be technologically savvy, his lack of presence in the search engines of the nation may be a telling sign. Either he is like the guy that can build a car but can’t drive it, or he knows something about the Internet we don’t. Both are scary propositions.
Pundits speculated when Takach threw his tinfoil hat into the ring, that he had accidentally applied for the wrong job. Rather than Liberal Leader, it is apparent Takach is running for the post of Technology Critic in someone else’s shadow cabinet. Still, Takach’s chances of winning the leadership is every bit as good as anyone else in the rest of the field without a French surname… which is to say, worse than crappy.
Oh Justin, Justin, we have waited so long for you! We knew eventually you would grow older and try and run the Liberals like dear old Dad. It had a certain feeling of inevitability to it… like death only less pleasant. Too bad, of PET’s two remaining sons, you had to be the dumb one.
True, young Trudeau did seek higher learning; enough to get him a job as a drama teacher, anyway. Although not much help in formulating policy, this acting experience makes him far more qualified to do battle with the Harper Conservatives than even the combative Colonel McCrimmon. After all hyperbolic histrionics are well suited for warfare amongst the parliamentary benches. On the other hand, The Speaker of the House will give you a stern dressing down if you silence opposing party members with an armed missile or improvised explosive device.
Trudeau’s greatest asset is also his albatross; that famous name. For all those Canadians that loved his pop, there are just as many that use the Trudeau name as a strange Pavlovian signal to expectorate. His second greatest asset is, of course, his wild, untamed hairdo which, by federal law, apparently, must be mentioned in every media report that has anything to do with the man.
There’s lots of Libs that simply wanted to coronate the thespian-leaning politico the second Trudeau announced his candidacy on October 2nd. Cooler heads prevailed, however, when they realized three things; a) that’s how they ended up with Ignatief, b) it has the public optics of being undemocratic, and c) most importantly, the party can really use the $75,000.00 they are receiving from each candidate just to put their name in. It is a safe bet they would welcome another hundred more candidates just for the dough. Obviously, upon collecting all those big fat entry fees THEN they will coronate Trudeau.
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